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We all understand the importance of protecting our skin from the sun, but what have you done lately to protect your kayaks outer layer from those same harmful UV rays? After long periods of time exposed to sunlight, Ultraviolet Radiation can destroy almost anything it comes into contact with. A couple of  summers out in the sun will not only fade your kayak’s radiant shade, but the material will become noticeably more limber on the water and therefore, more likely to suffer from serious damages due to brittle plastic. Most kayaks are made from polyethylene and are quickly aged by the sun. While Fiberglass kayaks are likely to age slower than plastic, after time they too will begin to fade and show damage to the finish. With that said, here are a few worthwhile methods that will help prolong your kayak’s lifespan so that you can enjoy days out on the water for summers to come.

 

1. Don’t Store Gear in the Sun

Paddling a couple times a week during summer doesn’t typically over-expose your kayak to UV radiation, but keeping it stored in an outdoor location with full sun may inflict some serious wounds on your once majestic looking yak. The best way to store your kayak during season is upside down, raised up off of the ground, and draped with a cover. If you are not able to store your kayak in a weather controlled area, your best bet is to store the kayak on its side, the strongest point of the boat.  Products such as the Malone J-Dock are great for this purpose.

kayakstands-john-ai jdock

 

2. Use 303 Aerospace Protectant

303 Aerospace Protectant is really just a fancy way of saying kayak sunscreen. The substance comes in a spray bottle and should be generously applied by buffing with a cloth. While it does not condition or restore plastic, it does serve as a tried and true method of effective sun blocking. Your protectant usage will depend on how often you take your boat out on the water. When you fail to see water beading on the hull of your boat, you know it’s time to apply another coat. Another benefit to 303 is that it can be also be used on flotation bags and other plastic materials and it keeps your boat nice and shiny!

Before . . . After

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3. Coverage is Key

There are many different coverage options that assist in protecting your kayak’s exterior from weather and other elements that can make your boat frail. Full kayak covers and cockpit covers are a couple excellent ways to keep your kayak clean and far less scratched while in storage. The full sized covers help with maintaining the kayak’s temperature and exterior layer while the cockpit covers fit over the exposed seat and help keep the interior clean. Coverage is especially important if sunshine storage is your kayak’s only option. Having a kayak cover on during transportation is also a beneficial way to help prevent most of the wear and tear that accumulates from traveling.

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Now that you’ve gained a bit of helpful info regarding keeping your kayak in tip top shape, take a peek at our “3 Simple Steps to Better Sun Protection” blog for information on how to keep your skin protected, that way you’ll have all of your most important assets protected from the sun.

 

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13 comments

  1. I had no idea that you need to protect your kayak from the sun to protect it for these reasons. I will be going home and moving mine out of the sun. Thanks for sharing!

  2. Enjoyed seeing the short ack TV video about the bass fishing tournament
    I would like to have seen better and more prolonged shots of how and with what their kayaks were rigged. I am just starting to fish from my yak and don’t seem to be able to get everything I want and need to take on it.

  3. Ok – I am 63 and have used my 12’Angler four or five times- I was out in a cove fishing and I put a rod in the back holder, then leaned over to get two more rods out and turned over. 1. I lost three rods- be very careful to keep rods not in your hand locked down. 2. I had opened the front hatch and did not latch it back down. So when I turned over, a lot of water got in the boat- be sure to lock down the hatch 3. My life jacket auto inflated, so I had to deflate it to get back in the boat. 4. Now I am across the lake, no real life jacket,with a lot of water in the boat ( making it unstable) . I had for the first time shortened my paddle to a half-paddle so my only real propulsion was the peddles. 5. As I started back across the lake, the wind came up so I was peddling with a strong side wind, the water in the boat made it unstable, and I turned over again. I was tired from recovering from the first turn over, so it was imposable for me to get back in the boat. I waved down a fellow fisherman and asked him to tow me in. It all worked out, but just be sure to be prepared to turn over at ANY time. This could have been a disaster, but I took my time and did not panic. Love the boat, but I have a healthy respect of what could happen. Maybe this will help some of you from making the same mistakes.

    1. Yep. I LOVE my PA 14 but they will turn over. I’m not quite your age but I can imagine you had a difficult situation. As a long time kayaker, I’ve towed multiple boats back to safety, yes with my kayak. I feel like we are all brothers on the water because if you have ever needed help on it, it’s a horrible feeling not seeing a boat anywhere around. I’m glad you found help but remember to always attempt to help boaters too. You would be surprised how easy it is to tow a boat with a PA! Just take your time getting momentum and then keep a steady, slow pace. Normally, on a larger lake, someone in a boat will see you and take over. the attempt is what counts. I can promise you if they see us trying to help, it will go a long way in getting respect on the water.

  4. I want to store my pro angler 14 outside….it is taking up too much floor space in my workshop. Does Hobie, or anyone else make a cover that will fit this beast? What about a stand that will not affect the hull, as well. Thank you from a loyal customer.

      1. Hi Genna,

        I am wondering if there is any reason why the Punk or the Dude wouldn’t fit. The length is appropriate but I am unsure if the width might be an issue. The numbers are good, 49″ and 55″ respectively, and the PA14 is 38″ wide. Just wanna be sure before I make the purchase. I obviously don’t want one too small but equally I don’t want more cover than I need. Thanks!